To ensure a continuing supply of telephone numbers, area code 326 will be added in March 2020 to the area currently served by 937, which includes the Hillsboro and Highland County area.
The new 326 area code, which will be phased in beginning March 8, 2020, will serve the same geographic area currently served by the existing 937 area code, which generally covers the western region of the state serving communities such as Dayton, Wilmington and Springfield, according to a news release from the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio.
Hillsboro and surrounding communities in Highland County are also served by the 937 area code, according to a PUCO map of the area.
According to the release, current telephone numbers, including the area code, will not change, and neither will the price of a call, coverage area, or other rates and services.
The new code will act as an area code overlay, which is the addition of another area code to the same geographic region as an existing area code. An overlay does not require customers to change their existing area code, according to the release.
As a result of the overlay, a new local dialing procedure requires callers to dial the area code and the telephone number, or the number one, followed by the area code and the telephone number. This means that all local calls in the 937 area code that are currently dialed with seven digits will need to be dialed using the area code or the number one followed by the area code.
The same dialing procedure will apply to telephone numbers assigned to the new 326 area code.
Effective Aug. 10, 2019, phone users should begin using the new dialing procedures whenever calls are placed from the 937 area code, the release said. Calls dialed with just seven digits will still be completed at that time.
But, beginning Feb. 8, 2020, the new dialing procedures must be used for all calls. After that date, calls with just seven digits will not be completed and a recording will instruct users to hang up and dial again including the area code, according to the news release.
Local calls will remain local, regardless of the number of digits dialed, according to the release.
Beginning March 8, 2020, new telephone lines or services may be assigned numbers using the new 326 area code, the release said.
According to the release, 911 calls will remain three digits.
So, too, will 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711 or 811 if those numbers are currently available in your community, the release said.
Customers with questions about the dialing procedure change should contact their local service provider, according to the release, or they can visit the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio website www.puco.ohio.gov.
Additional information regarding area code exhaust and maps of Ohio’s area code boundaries can also be found on the website, according to the release.